Does eating chocolate or potato chips make acne worse? And other questions You're Afraid to Ask

by STRONG Magazine

Meet Dr. Jennifer Gruen.

Dr. Jenn knew she wanted to be a pediatrician from the age of 8!  After many years in practice she is now a partner at Village Pediatrics in Weston CT. She’s here to answer all your questions about your body and your health.


Does eating chocolate or potato chips make acne worse? And what is the best way to get rid of my pimples?

The short answer is NO, your diet does not significantly affect your likelihood of getting acne. In teens, the most common offender is puberty, which causes increased oil secretion that plugs up the pores in your face, chest and back. Often the “T-zone” of the face (across the forehead and down the middle of the face- your nose and chin) suffers the most. Stress, shaving (if you’re a boy), oil based makeup and certain medications can make acne worse.

To help control excess oil, and to remove makeup or grime that can clog pores, you should GENTLY wash your face twice a day with a mild or non-soap cleanser. No need to buy anything expensive. Also, don’t squeeze or pop your pimples as this will only increase inflammation and could cause a more extensive infection!

For break-outs, or to control oily skin, try using an over the counter benzoyl peroxide wash which will help reduce oil production and treat bacteria in the pores.

Is it normal for one breast to be bigger than the other?

Yes, this is not only totally normal, it is very common in puberty as breasts start to develop.  Breast “buds” usually emerge anytime from age 8 to age 13 and often one side appears well before the other.  Even adult women often have mildly asymmetric breasts, but this is quite hard to notice even when wearing a bra or swimsuit.  If you are concerned with your breast appearance, visit a specialty lingerie store where you can find inserts to help even out your chest, but don’t worry as time will probably do the job for you!


Did you know?

Early acne lesions are called whiteheads and blackheads. Blackheads are not black because of dirt in the pore. The black color is due to melanin, a skin pigment, being pushed to the surface and undergoing a chemical reaction with oxygen to darken.

Did you know?

“Acne” is derived from the Latin word “acme,” meaning “prime of life.” This is probably because it is most prevalent during the teen years. Mentions of acne in history books dates back to the time of the Pharaohs!